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Flagstaff Medical Center, Verde Valley Medical Center Expected To Receive The Moderna Vaccine

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Northern Arizona Healthcare expects to receive the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine soon after it is approved. NAH CEO Flo Spyrow says they anticipate the vaccine to arrive “as early as next week, and be prepared to have those available to our health care workers beginning December 28th.” She says she hopes the vaccine will be available to the general public by April. The Moderna vaccine has an efficacy rate of 95-percent and is a two-shot vaccine. One concern with the vaccines is how quick it was made available. NAH Chief Quality Officer Dr. John Mougin says “while this did happen in record time, it went through the normal phases, there was just an emphasis on reducing any kind of delay and keeping things moving along in the development of the vaccine.” On why NAH facilities will receive the Moderna vaccine instead of the Pfizer one, that is being distributed now, Spyrow says “as they looked at those communities in rural areas, and the difficulty of the storage, as well as the transportation and the refrigeration requirements, the Moderna vaccine didn’t require some of those complications both in distribution and in storage.” Health care workers will be the first group to get the vaccine, followed by employees in long-term health care facilities. NAH has asked for 900 doses for Flagstaff Medical Center and 500 for Verde Valley Medical Center, which would cover half of their employees. Mougin says if they need more they will reorder the vaccine and have it arrive the following week.

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